I quit my CPA Job to buy Large Apartment Buildings

380 Replies

Hi Brian,

I am new to the investing world currently working a 9 to 5 and saving up to invest.  To start out I plan to buy a fourplex to live in, but long term I want to become a private investor in large apartment buildings (Investing around 50k). How do you suggest I go about getting on someone's "list" similar to what you have when you find a deal then inform your investors? By the way, this is my first post :)

I can't stress the importance of relationships, I was presented an off market deal one of my real estate brokers brought me, my letter of intent has been accepted and moving to contract on a 130+ unit deal in South Carolina. Capital raise is $2 million and a 100k min investment. My investors love the returns they get with working with my company.

@Brian Adams

Where can I find out more information on that HUD financing that you mentioned during your podcast?

I found a link, but I'm not sure if this is the program that you used.


Originally posted by @Brian Adams :

@Mike Hartzog what I do is put together an executive summary of the deal. It lays out the opportunity, where it is located, why it is the best opportunity for the investor right now, discussing the market, sharing the risks and challenges of the deal, identifying the exit strategy so the investor knows when and how they will get paid back, sales comps, rent comps, financial analysis, projected returns and other info.

 Would you mind sharing an example of your Executive Summary? Replacing actual info with false. I just would like to see how you laid it out. -THanks

Originally posted by @Brian Adams :

Brandon B., over the years I have spent some time studying different types of real estate investing.

In my opinion, and I was fortunate to see as a CPA my high net worth clients crush it with apartments and also someone who has bought a multi, apartments are hands down the IDEAL investing strategy. Apartments produce:

  • Income
  • Depreciation (Great Tax Benefit)
  • Equity
  • Appreciation
  • Leverage

My ideal deal is where we can solve a problem and force appreciation.

If you are not familiar with the concept on how to force appreciation, you can click this link for a quick video discussing a value play strategy (note you don’t need to opt-in to view the video):


 Video was removed.. Can you PM the video if you still have the link. Thanks

Originally posted by @Brian Adams :

@Ross Williams , I am glad I can be helpful to you and others on BP.

I have had a similar experience with over charges and it was uncovered by having controls in place and doing checks and balances. 

Managing the management company can be whole new thread. :)) 

I break-up my due diligence process into several categories - physical, financial, market, legal and 3rd party management company. To get comfortable, we interview PM's, check references, ask other professionals in the area for recommendations like attorneys, brokers, go on IREM.org to name a few.

It's all part of the process.

I travel to see my Dallas deal every month right now as I am spending $750,000 on the rehab, my SC project I will be seeing next quarter.

I am looking for value add deals with an 8 cap or better and my investors get excited with a 7-8% preferred return and an IRR in the high teens to low 20's.


Do you offer Equity Kickers along with your preferred return? I was listening to a course of a current BPr and he said only offer a preferred return if the investor request it. It was stated that the deal should be split 70 or 80% to investors and you keep the 30 or 20%.

What are your thoughts?

@Maurice Nusom , I appreciate the questions. I don't have a blank template I can send. I just placed a 130+ unit deal under contract and starting due diligence so a bit jammed up right now.

I will send you the value play video directly.

For equity kickers and know that each deal is different, what I have done is structured the opportunity where the investor receives a preferred return and after that the splits can range from 50/50 to 75/25 - favoring the investor. 

Trust me you can get really complicated with allocations and waterfalls and hurdle rates. Depending on your investors, sometimes it is better to keep things simple.

Hey Brian,

Thanks for sharing your story! It's very inspiring...as someone just starting out, I hope to have the same kind of success you've had. It's encouraging to read another story of someone who's already gone down this path.

@Isaac Rothermel , I appreciate the message. Just know the path ahead for you most likely and with a doubt have challenge. I have failed many times, lost money, got frustrated, didn't think I would be able to get a deal done, but with focus and determination and pushing away the naysayers and negative folks, good things can happen if you surround yourself with the right type of people.

I wanted to plug @Joshua Dorkin and @Brandon Turner as they have put together some great podcasts and BP is a great forum for knowledge exchange.

Good luck on your journey my friend!!

Funny you should mention the podcasts put on by Brandon and Josh -- I've been tuning in every Wednesday to watch. It's an interesting feeling know that several hundred other like-minded people are watching, too. I appreciate your response -- after looking at your profile, I'm impressed by both your achievements and your goals!

Hey @Brian Adams , nice job here. You have inspired and motivated many investors with your success!!  This is one of the longest strings I've seen going on BP in terms of both time and # of posts.

I wish you massive success with your apartment investing!!!

BTW, are you working with Patti P. and her son as your PM team in TX?

@Brian Adams Thank you so much for that inspiring post. I'm fairly new to the investing field and i have been reading and watching videos on youtube everyday (Currently 11/22/2015  2:38 am eastern). It's so much information but i don't know how exactly to put it into applications. My questions would be: 

1) How do you find a credible mentor?

2) What is the name of the marketing platform you are subscribed to?

3) Do i need to create an llc before my first deal?

Thank you in advance for your reply.

@Lavaud Charlemagne , I agree there is a lot of information to consume. So you don't get "lost" in what you are reading and watching, consider mapping out a plan.

You shared you are new to real estate investing. First thing you need to know and map out is what type of real estate investing do you want to pursue. There are many choices: wholesaling, flipping, buy/rent/hold, office, retail, development, multifamily, etc.

There will be many distractions that come across your desk, but once you know what category of real estate investing you want to pursue you need to put the time in to be the expert.

Since you commented here on my post I will take the liberty that you want to pursue apartment investing.

Next question you need to ask is - Why Apartments? Of all the categories why this one? Once you get really clear on your WHY, it will give you soooooo much clarity and focus.

If you don't know the WHY, map out trainings and videos that will help you. Next will be what type of properties, where they are located, how they will be managed, how will you get the money to close, etc.

Hopefully you can see where I am going with this. Break down the BIG topic of investing in apartments and put into manageable, easy to consume steps. If you don't know the answer or understand the topic, map out a plan and learn it.

To answer your questions:

1 - you can find a mentor at your local REIA, here on Bigger Pockets

2- I am changing my marketing platform in 2016 - but what I used was called profit rockets.

3 - I am not an attorney, but if you are putting offers in I would suggest setting up an LLC as it will give you more credibility when speaking to real estate brokers and investors.

@Ryan Koehler , I like the Upstate of SC - Greenville and Spartanburg. I own a 140+ unit deal near Clemson University.

Ryan, looks like you are close to me, I am about 20 minutes from West Chester.

Originally posted by @Brian Adams :

@Ryan Koehler, I like the Upstate of SC - Greenville and Spartanburg. I own a 140+ unit deal near Clemson University.

Ryan, looks like you are close to me, I am about 20 minutes from West Chester.

 Yes we are very close. And ironically, I'm a current senior at Clemson University. Is the property student housing?